I went parachuting this morning, the first time
since December. It is such an exhilarating experience throwing
yourself out into space, putting all your faith in the equipment. It
is a rush of fear and adrenalin. We are jumping to keep our
qualifications current and to celebrate the regiments 25th birthday on the
Every day at around four a dust devil, a
small tornado about 40 feet wide and a 150 feet high, comes tearing
through my tent. It is as if it has a mind of its own and is out to
make my life miserable. It covers everything I own in dirt and
scatters everything that is not tied down.
14 April 93
I got another jump on the 12th. It was
probably a reward for working GD at Service Commando's kitchen the day
before. Early yesterday morning Daren, Bruce and Tim headed down to
Bulo Burti to pick up another aid convoy, but it turned out it wasn't
there. It did give them a chance to exchange field rations with the
Italians though, so we now have some good Italian coffee and a change of
food. We have been eating field rations for months now and it is
with our systems.
The Italians have offered us some seats on one of their jumps.
There are nine seats for the entire commando and my name is one of three
put in for the section. I made it past the first cut, but I doubt I
will get it with those odds. I can hope though.
Yesterday afternoon we headed out and set up a roadblock on the highway
south of here. We stopped 31 vehicles and only found one stolen
jerry can. One small Toyota pickup truck that we stopped had 36
people, 10 one hundred pound bags of rice and three goats stuffed
into it. It looked like some college prank riding up to us
suspension bottomed out.
On the 7th we escorted a convoy from Bulo Burti up to Montobann in the
RCD sector. The highway in the north is in excellent condition (for
Somalia,) so we made excellent time when we got up there. On
the 8th, we celebrated the Regiments (and my) 25th birthday. We had
a parade and a BBQ, then Sean and I went over to the engineer compound to
party with Bryson. After ten beer I was a bit drunk for my midnight
shift on guard duty and hung over for my six a.m. shift.
16 April 93
Last night on a roadblock, we stopped and searched
21 vehicles. Three of the vehicles were empty Lorries returning from
the unescorted food convoy to Montebann. In the blood on the backs,
under bags of grain, we found six weapons. A BM-19, a G-3 and four
AK's. We found out today that the convoy had made a break for the
Ethiopian border when we turned it loose at Montebann. They were
turned back by the RCD's, but later, half of them were found in the
various villages selling off the aid.
20 April 93
Mom was interviewed by CBC radio and read some of
my letters. I sent her a cold letter in reply to her news. I
really shouldn't blame her though. She is proud and wants to
express that. It is strange, because I really don't mind any of what
was in the paper being published. Actually I was a little
bit proud that it was considered good enough. It is just that she
didn't even ask me. What am I supposed to do? Put an
okay on everything I write to here that is okay for the world to
read? Must I censor myself? What I write is for her,
not for some cud chewing moron down the street living his small meaningless
life. Maybe I'm just not ready to bare myself to the world yet. The
wounds I've suffered are still too tender to be poked and prodded by
curious eyes. How can I open up to her not knowing if it will be shared
with the world? I am pissed off, not for what she has done, but for
how it affects the way that I relate to her. It is typical of the
way our relationship has always been though.